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Laid-off teachers keep heat on Archdiocese for severance

(KWMU staff)
ACEE members displayed this placard at a news conference Wednesday outside the St. Louis Archdiocese's headquarters.

By Matt Sepic, KWMU

St. Louis – Laid-off Catholic grade school teachers in the St. Louis area say they still haven't heard from the archdiocese about severance pay.

About 200 of them got pink slips earlier this year as part of a major parish and school restructuring plan, though nearly half have been re-hired.

Mary Chubb heads the Association of Catholic Elementary Educators, or ACEE.
She said those who are still out of work need to know about any severance pay soon.

"The lack of action is cruel, it's thoughtless, and it reflects the fact that our archbishop does not place his schools or his teachers very high on his priority list," Chubb said.

Terry Edelmann with the Catholic Education Office said the Archdiocese has not ruled out severance packages. But she added it will take time to develop a plan that be fair to all laid-off parish employees, not just teachers.

"We're dealing with unprecedented numbers, and unprecedented policy in terms of severance, and it's just a question of seeing of how this can best be played out," Edelmann said. "But I think there will be an announcement soon."

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